President Barak Obama's claim that he "inherited" the economy of the United States from President George W. Bush is false.
I had already noted in an earlier post that Obama claimed to have inherited budget deficits from Bush. Although he he had inherited the debt, he had not inherited all of the current annual budget deficit, which he himself added to dramatically as president, and certainly not any deficits after this fiscal year, which are approved under his administration. It is worth noting that Obama, as a U.S. Senator during Bush's second term, had voted for much of the excessive domestic spending during that time, especially the increase in the final two years of the Bush Administration when Obama's Democratic Party gained the majority control of both houses of Congress, which authorizes all spending. Obama nevertheless criticized Bush for fiscal irresponsibility, as if he had not contributed to it as a Senator, and as if somehow Bush's budget deficit helped cause the recent economic downturn, yet has approved or proposed far more domestic spending, supposedly in order to stimulate economic growth, even though his spending plan is hardly stimulative in the short term. My point is not to equate the budget with the economy, but to demonstrate that Obama and his liberal supporters are misleading when claiming that everything bad was inherited by Obama from Bush.
The claim that Obama inherited the bad economy from Bush is like claiming that when Obama was sworn into office on January 20, 2009, he inherited Winter from Bush. Neither Bush nor any other president is responsible for the economy because the economy is not the responsiblity of government in the first place, especially the federal government of the United States. In other words, to complete the metaphor about inheritance, Obama did not inherit the economy from Bush because Bush could not have bequeathed something to his successor of which he never had title.
Presidents are not responsible for the economy because it is generally not their duty to promote prosperity. Their duty is to protect our rights. Although presidents, together with Congress, have areas of authority that impact the economy, and they ought not to harm the economy unnecessarily, the federal government does not control the entire economy, such as socialist or fascist governments totally control the economies of their states. Therefore, presidents do not have economic policies per se, only economic aspects to their fiscal or other policies. At times, presidents must even engage in policies that are harmful to the economy in order to protect our liberty. For example, President Thomas Jefferson approved a trade embargo against the United Kingdom for its impressment of American sailors on the high seas, which caused an economic depression. Yet many liberals who seem to hold the state of the economy as one of the most significant barometers of a president's performance judge Jefferson's presidency favorably. But even if all of a president's policies approved by Congress are economically beneficial, the economy may not necessarily prosper because of other problems beyond his control, just as he cannot receive fairly all of the credit for any prosperity his policies helped to stimulate. Conversely, the economy may continue to grow despite harmful government economic policies.
George W. Bush was not responsible for the economic downturn that occurred in the latter part of his second term, after a lengthy period of prosperity. Inflation, caused in part by a rise in energy prices because of increased global demand for oil (because of an increase in global prosperity), damaged the economy. Liberals blamed Bush for the price of oil, as if he ought to be responsible for it, even though many liberals, like Obama, favor higher energy prices.
Obama's economically fascist policies (i.e. indirect socialism whereby ownership of businesses remains private, but under the control of the State), however, are bringing the United States to the point that the president will become responsible for the economy. Then Obama will be unable to escape much of the blame for his economically harmful policies.
Time to Let Fair Funding Work
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